While French women may not get fat. Italian women are impossibly slender and usually very well dressed to boot. On top of that, to add insult to injury, they also enjoy their street food, above left mum and daughter tuck into what I suspect is a fried sandwich type thingy (also known as a Panzerotto) from Luinis in Milan. And I am not sure if this is sadism on the part of said attractive Milanese ladies, but when you meet them for lunch, anticipating they are going to mournfully look at a salad leaf and a radish, pick at it listlessly and then drink 1 liter of mineral water instead, ignoring even the radish (how else can they remain in such great shape, you think.) They absolutely do NOT order the salad with dressing on the side, or say, actually I am not hungry, you know I had a big breakfast. No, instead they order a very big slice of focaccia with cheese and tomatoes on top and eat it with a side of French fries. And while looking at you eating a grilled fish and salad (which you ordered to fit in and not look greedy) say: ” well I’m not a on diet” apologetically gesturing at their fast vanishing carb-fest, as they inhale the entire contents of their plate with the concentration and enthusiasm of a building site worker, who has just spent 5 hours hauling bricks in the sun….. No I am not making this up, can’t you tell?
An Italian male near me tells me this is part of female warfare strategy in Milan, and that Italian ladies (the ones I met by the way are really very nice, don’t get me wrong) don’t eat for the 3 days following a focaccia and french fry happening. It would make a lot of sense, but then maybe they just have a great metabolism, what do I know?
From watching people eat and wear lots of make-up, high high heels and tight clothes I also wandered through the clothes shops to see what women buy. You learn a lot about a culture from its shopping habits. Although in Milan it’s usually strictly look, don’t touch, unless you are there during the 7 years of slimness with no credit limit and no inhibitions on spending. And to be fair, I was allowed into the shops and allowed to look :). Unlike a colleagues petite sister- slim (size 0/1 US or 34/36 Europe) who while living in South Korea, would on trying to enter a shop, regularly be met by shop assistants rushing at her shooing her away and emphatically saying ” Noooooo fatty, fatty…….”
Sadly this still makes me giggle, whenever I think about small Korean ladies saying it to a small blond lady…..funnily enough it’s funnier when said with a non-english accent, I don’t know why.
Does this make me a bad person?